Here’s an approachable introduction to the growing collection of industry insider documents on opioids, free to all

Caleb Alexander, together with colleagues at Johns Hopkins, UCSF and I just published “The Opioid Industry Documents Archive: A Living Digital Repository” in American Journal of Public Health. This paper describes the growing Opioid Industry Documents Archive that is part of the UCSF Industry Documents Library and outlines opportunities for research and public education with the archive.

It is rapidly growing. As of May 2022, the OIDA contained 1 526 747 documents (7 842 493 pages; see the table below, taken from our paper, which describes the then-existing collections). As additional cases settle in the ongoing opioid litigation the archive continues to grow. Indeed, as of July 21, is had already grown to 1,554,202 documents.

Current documents come from US District Court records, several state attorneys
general investigations, journalists, plaintiff and defendant exhibits and depositions, bankruptcy cases (e.g., Insys, Mallinckrodt), and legal settlements (McKinsey and Co). Like the tobacco documents, the opioid collections contain e-mails, memos, presentations, sales reports, budgets, audit reports, meeting agendas and minutes, expert witness reports, and depositions by pharmaceutical company executives. It also contains Drug Enforcement Administration briefings.

The information in the archive is a treasure trove not only for those personally
affected by opioids, but also to researchers, journalists, policymakers, and the general public.

Check the collection out here. These huge collections can be a little intimidating. Ease your way in by clicking the “Take a Tour” button at the top of the screen.

The full citation is: Alexander GC, Mix LA, Choudhury S, Taketa R, Tomori C, Mooghali M, Fan A, Mars S, Ciccarone D, Patton M, Apollonio DE, Schmidt L, Steinman MA, Greene J, Ling PM, Seymour AK, Glantz S, Tasker K. The Opioid Industry Documents Archive: A Living Digital Repository. Am J Public Health. 2022 Aug;112(8):1126-1129. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2022.306951. PMID: 35830677. It is available here.

Published by Stanton Glantz

Stanton Glantz is a retired Professor of Medicine who served on the University of California San Francisco faculty for 45 years. He conducts research on tobacco and cannabis control and cardiovascular disease/

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